Fri | Aug 18, 2017

Children demand urgent attention, says Samuels

Published:Monday | January 16, 2017 | 1:00 AMChristopher Serju
The Reverend Dr Stevenson Samuels (right), chairman of the National Leadership Prayer Breakfast Committee, greets Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Rocky Meade, and Chief Justice Zaila McCalla at a service at the Church of the Open Bible on Washington Boulevard in Kingston yesterday.

Women and children will, for the first time, be the focus of the 37th National Leadership Prayer Breakfast, which takes place at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in St Andrew on Thursday, according to the Reverend Dr Stevenson Samuels, chair of the committee that plans this annual event.

"For the first time this year, we have also felt the need to include prayers for children. We feel that these are vulnerable groups with regards to crime and violence plaguing our society. Children demand urgent attention," he declared.

Samuels bemoaned that children were abused by adults and also experienced high levels of poverty, neglect by parents, little moral and spiritual training, in addition to insufficient access to other things.

His comments came yesterday at the Church of the Open Bible Church in St Andrew.

Chief Justice Zaila McCalla, Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Rocky Meade, Courtney Campbell, president and chief executive officer of the Victoria Mutual Group, along with members of the National Leadership Prayer Breakfast Committee, were among the special guests of the church.

Samuels used the occasion to remind the congregation that allegations of impropriety against members of the clergy were symptomatic of a wider societal rot.

"The recent alleged sexual abuse case against the pastor, in addition to other similar allegations reported in the media, is an indication that this scourge is present in all sectors of our society," he added.

christopher.serju@gleanerjm.com